Val-Dieu Grand Cru - Brasserie de l'Abbaye du Val-Dieu

Not Rated.
Val-Dieu Grand CruVal-Dieu Grand Cru

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BA SCORE
93
outstanding

147 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 147
Hads: 318
rAvg: 4.18
pDev: 5.98%
Wants: 50
Gots: 36 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Brasserie de l'Abbaye du Val-Dieu visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Quadrupel (Quad) |  10.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 12-02-2006

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 147 | Hads: 318
Photo of barczar
4.08/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Very raisiny and prune dominant in aroma, with rich melanoidin character and toasty malt.

Flavor echoes, but is more dry than expected, with a bit of alcohol bite. (164 characters)

Photo of Sammy
4.1/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pour black, with not a thick body, virtually no head, I think this one 5 years old. Still good mouthfeel conistency. Spicey aroma. Taste of cocoa and licorice predominately, still very nice with supper. Rich aged taste, not your coriander. Sweetish spice. (255 characters)

Photo of tempest
4.1/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Picked up a bottle from Abe's for about $9, served in a chalice.

This is big, sweet quad with enough spice to make you wonder if the yeast can really do that much work. It's fruity, of course, with dark fruit of blackberries, dates, and raisins. The spice elements is all very smooth with light vanilla, corriander, white pepper, and cinnamon. My only complaint is that while this doesn't drink cloyingly sweet, it can become a little much and this is a must-share beer. (471 characters)

Photo of thierrynantes
4.1/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beer bottle (75 cl.) purchased from "Bières d'ailleurs", and tasted in 2013.

Appearance : reddish brown color, with tan foamy head.
Smell : roasted malt and spicy aromas.
Taste & mouthfeel : alcohol and malty flavors, with vineous notes.
Drinkability : a nice beer in the style Quadrupel. (290 characters)

Photo of Gavage
4.11/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: pours a clear reddish dark amber color. One finger head falls to a thick surface covering. Nice lacing paints the glass.

Smell: yeast, alcohol, and caramel candy are pleasant on the nose.

Taste: caramel, bread dough, plums, grapes, honey, spicy yeast, and mild alcohol tones are wrapped in a nice bitterness. This is a hearty Grand Cru.

Mouthfeel: medium-heavy in body. Smooth throughout. Long caramel and bready aftertaste.

Drinkability: this beer represented the style well and is a slow sipper. Alcohol will catch up to you with this one. Nice beer worth finding. (591 characters)

Photo of grayburn
4.11/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer laces forever. That is the only thing to say, absolut lace-heaven. Midnight or dark dark brown color with a heavy cream head. Great retention, I couldn't ask for any more in a beer.

I must preface my review for smell and taste with the fact that this beer is young. The date on the cork says 02/09, therefore the 10.5 percent was definitely evident. The smell was some nice belgian yeastiness, the dried fruit and sourness, coupled with some strong alkyhol. The taste followed suit, very nice and fruity, a bit hot though.

The high carbonation and clean finish really helped this beer along, the body seems surprisingly light for all the flavor, very nice.

This beer will only improve, I am already very impressed. Time to set a couple back for 2 or 3. (765 characters)

Photo of CrellMoset
4.11/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle from Five Points Bottle Shoppe, Athens, GA. Split with my father, with my portion poured into a cervoise.

Appearance: Pours a deep but still largely transparent orange brown. For a quadrupel of 10.5% abv, the head on this one is mammoth and has fantastic retention - I actually had to coax mine down, as it looked as if it not had intention of going anywhere anytime soon. It's a good two-and-a-half fingers, fluffy and solid-looking in places, bubbly, sudsy, and foamy in others, slightly creamy in color. It's also flecked with little specks of black, glittery, perhaps yeast matter or spices. The body itself is loaded with fine floaties, dancing around with one another, caught up in some kind of internal beer jet stream. I originally had this at a 4.5, but given how long the lacing and head stuck around, I'm really gonna have to bump it up to a 5.0. Just great.

Aroma: Intensely fruity and spicy is my first impression. Apples, pears, cherries, and other lighter fruity notes mingle well with a wide array of yeasty spices, an earthy, phenolic kick, and a bucketload of darker malts. It smells slightly more "medicinal" here than as described in the taste below, hence the score discrepancy, but by and large the notes are very similar.

Taste: A fantastic and complex array of flavors here. Ripe stone fruits are the main course here, apricots, buttery pears, slightly tart apples, flourishes of more tropical examples. The yeast - in addition to overripe bananas - imparts a huge amount of delicate spice which isn't limited to clove: I get definite anise and hints of allspice, as well, along with a number of other spicy and nondescript but nonetheless pleasant phenols. The obligatory Belgian quadrupel darker fruits are present as well, with raisins and prunes intermingling well with the other flavors present. Other malt notes - caramel, sweet chocolate, honey, candi sugar - put a cap on this very complex-tasting brew. Any alcohol prickle is hidden admirably both by the spicy phenols and the sweet, ripe fruits, both of which combine to do the job without either one of them becoming annoying in the process.

Mouthfeel: On par with the best examples of the style, it's incredibly soft and delicate. The "sublimation" factor is slightly less intense than in some other examples, but it's still a divine-feeling beer, pillowy, intense, exploding, like drinking a cloud. Great.

Drinkability: A damn fine beer. First, the reason it's a 4.0: it's sweet, intensely sweet, with tons of sugars hanging around, fruity, malty, etc. It's also slightly medicinal in the phenolic profile, which is enhanced slightly by the dominating lighter fruity flavors (dimetapp anyone?). The alcohol's also pretty high. On the other hand, that alcohol's well hidden, the phenolic, medicinal quality doesn't come through as strongly in the taste, and this is - on the whole - a really damn complex and good beer. I don't know if I can in good faith classify it as a quadrupel - there's too much yeast character and too little malt character - but, regardless, give it a try. Recommended, highly. (3,102 characters)

Photo of madtowndmb1
4.12/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a liquid brown sugar color.

S:Has the yeasty smell that you'd expect but it also has a hint of a belgian sour. hints of candi sugar as well.

T: Very calm across the board I think. Not a ton going on, nothinhg overpowers and takes control. There's almost a dusty taste mixed in with the sweetness and the tingle on your tongue.

I liked this. If someone was getting into Quads I'd point them in this direction. Very easy drinker for 10.5%!!! (451 characters)

Photo of draheim
4.13/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750mL (best by 12/11? on cork) poured into a chalice. Crystal-clear mahogany color w/ a 1-finger khaki head. Nice bright carb.

Aroma is vinous grapes and some dark sugary fruits.

Taste is plums, dark candi sugar, grapes, and sweet malt. A little alcohol burn too, which I actually like.

Mouthfeel is velvety and smooth, with a clean dry finish.

Overall this one surprised me, I really liked it as a sipper over a dinner of Thanksgiving leftovers. Nice and warm and tasty. (475 characters)

Photo of tavernjef
4.13/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Dark purpley pour to settle a glazed black with a mediumish sized light sandy tanned whitened cap that slips away quickly to a hazey skim and good collaring. Lots of lacing in a solid coating sticks tightly in a wave of tiny holed sheeting acroos the snifter.

Aroma is soft and dullish of dark fruity sugars and purple grape juice, the dark malty fruityness begins to add up more as it warms as does some vanilla cola sweetness and a tiny hint to yeasty spice and black licorice. Nice, but I had to really stick my nose in it to get into it.

Taste is firm and soft with an alluring gradual pull into a sweet, dark, sugary pile of fruity pie filling. Purple grape emerges the winner at first taste with a smooth rounded tone of malty gooeyness that slips right into a melange of warming dark jellies and pastry fillings. Flavors and tones are quite acceptable in the realm of sweet dark malts, caramel, and light fruit tones, semi bready and sugary with vanilla, plum, fig, cherry, and grape. Lingers lightly for a bit and kinda cuts off before rebuilding a memory of lasting lengthy malt laden chewyness and slickness across the palate as it finishes with a crescendo of the warmth.

Body is firm, soothing, and just beyond medium with a thick lasting malty smooth reaction of boldness and chewyness. Has a late reacting finish which really grows on ya. Has quite the memory take back on the palate. A unique characteristic not found very often and which I found to be intriguing and fulfullingly fun and interesting. Warmth emerges even later with a hint of heat touching the back. The malts however stay the stage no matter the scene.

A pretty decent Belgian Quad here. Val-Dieu's Grand Cru is by far one of the better, top notch brews to be produced by them and worth giving a try. The unique effect of body from start to never ending finish in flavor and tone is the best part(heart) of the whole beer and the main reason to seek it out. (1,952 characters)

Photo of augustgarage
4.15/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cork date of 04/12 - not sure what vintage that makes this...served lightly chilled. Poured from a caged-and-corked 750mL bottle into my Trappist Westvleteren goblet.

The cork emerges with a burst of smoke and lends the air an immediate scent of currants and dessert wine.

Bottle glass brown body, reveals itself to be a complex mixture of garnet, carmine, and other deep reds with lighter highlights when held to a strong light. Extremely dark, yet with good clarity on first pour. A thin finger of creamy lasting wheat colored foam forms a dense sheen above the liquid's surface. Pasty tiers of lacing coat the sides, and a fine clear gloss rides down just beyond the edge of foam.

The aromatics are densely packed with esters, including a mixture of berries, currants, and wine (as mentioned above). As the beer warms and breathes, a hint of spice and leather emerges as well, while the yeast contributes it's own subtle complexity behind a bready malt note.

Tart around the edges, but primarily sweet, fruity, potently malty, with a wide array of secondary flavors from green figs to a light herbaceous quality that emerges in the finish. Hints of chocolate malt arrive long after the aftertaste should have given out - very impressive how slowly the flavors morph and evolve. Relatively sweet finish, though never cloying. A contemplative flavor profile which would lend this beer towards inclusion in the preparation of a meal, or paired with a good blue cheese (e.g. Roquefort, Gorgonzola, Bleu d'Auvergne) or ripened chevre (e.g. Humbolt Fog, Purple Haze, etc).

Effervescent, rich, full bodied mouthfeel, with hefty but by no means overwhelming alcohol content.

An excellent quad, a good value, with decent aging potential (maybe not enough to warrant picking up a 6L methuselah, but it's nice that you have the option). (1,837 characters)

Photo of Yesac
4.15/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Appears solid black in the glass. The head is extremely foamy and a pain to manage. The foam is sloppy and sticks to the glass unevenly.

S - caramel, roasted nuts, fruity accents, some tartness.

T - Pretty complex. Sweet fuits.. and a yeasty finish. It's watery-light overall which I'm not keen of. Smooth drinking.

M - Highly carbonated.. bubbles dancing across the tongue. Alcohol warming effect.

D - So smooth, thin and complex. The 10.5% is extremely well hidden. (477 characters)

Photo of JoBoTo
4.15/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The cork kicked my ass on this one. Took me a good 5 minutes to get this little thing loose. Didn't want to crack it so I took it slow, but it was in there tighter than... Nevermind. 75cl, 50-60 degrees, cork says Val-Dieu 03/10

Pours what originally was a brownish gray from the early on, but ends up a dark mahogany. Poured into a Duvel Chalice. Gave it about a finger and a half of head. Looking for lacing or colored edges and I am seeing nothing. Not like Stone XII dark, or Yeti dark, but still completely opaque, and no edging. Head is still there lingering and not dissipating quickly at all.

Smells of malt, yeast, and sweet...raisins. Sweetness is detectable, cherries cam to mind also, but can't relate it to a high or low, just in there quickly and disappearing rapidly. Seems like a cinnamony, spicy in there too. Sadly, I smell the metallic, (maybe yeasty) smell that I commonly smell in tripels and quads. I can feel my heart burn starting already.

Medium to thick body, wow, I was moving it around my mouth and a little got to the back and just attacked my throat. Needed to swallow before I got my ass kicked. Let's try this again. Tongue tingle is mild, with feeling all over. Leaves behind a nice coating of yeasty goodness. No alcohol burn, despite being 10.5% Seems to tickle your tongue tip more than any other area. Foams when played with

Yeast and an astery onslaught. Prunes maybe... raisins. Seems to be a fruit that I am not commonly familiar with. Definitely a sweet flavor in there that threw a rock at my attention, but is hiding when I turn to find. There is no metallic taste, thankfully, I was really hoping there wouldn't be. A darker malt... good all over flavor. The entire tongue gets to play in the beer. Thick coating left throughout your mouth. Feels like you could chew the residual left over. Just all over your mouth.

This is a good little find. Picked it up while in Spain for I believe 6 euro. Not bad for 75cl. I could see this being a gateway to some of the more complex. Not overly aggressive, except its drop kick to my uvula. I enjoyed it, and would recommend it to those that enjoy this style. (2,150 characters)

Photo of siradmiralnelson
4.15/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 750ml corked and caged into Westvleteren chalice.

A. Pours 2 finger head. Thick lacing. Really good retention. Color is very dark brown.

S. Caramel, dark fruit, oaky earthiness, belgian yeast. Smells like it is a dryer quad. Gets a little bit sweeter smelling as it warms. Brings out some candi sugar. Also get a bit of creamy spice as the beer warms. Interesting depth of aroma.

T. Drinks pretty dry too. Very interesting. Lots of caramel malt. So much caramel malt flavor it almost pulls the beers flavor away from being called a quad. Get belgian yeast, and a bit of spice on the back of the tongue. Not very sweet.

M. Medium/full bodied. Medium carbonation. Finishes pretty dry.

O. Really good beer. Great aroma. Flavor is not on par with the very best quads. Just not the traditional Belgian flavor of the very top Quads. Has a lot more caramel flavor, and lacks some of the sweetness. Never the less, this is a really good beer. (954 characters)

Photo of Soneast
4.16/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

On tap at Brasserie V in Madison, served in a Val-Dieu chalice. Pours a brown color with some copper tones. The light brown head is thick and pillowy and hangs on for the entire ride. I had to drink through suds right down to the very last sip. Great retention! Lace....Talk about lace! This more or less pulled a sheet of bubbles down the entire glass as I drank.

The aroma reminded me of black cherry so definitely some dark fruits on the nose as well as a well defined sweet malt and some brown sugar-ish/toasted caramel presence with little to no alcohol detected.

The flavor is quite complex, although predominated by the dark fruit character with black cherries being the dominant fruit I'd associate it with, as well as an underlying raisin, some brown sugar flavors, a mild chocolate presence throughout, and just a hint of hop spiciness towards the end to round out the flavor profile.

I was thoroughly impressed with this beer. Just silky smooth, leaving a delectable presence on the palate. Quite an easy drinker too, although it would probably be best to keep this to one or two glasses. Those Belgian Strong Dark Ales and Quads never cease to amaze me with their ability to pack an amazing flavor-punch, yet retain a low alcohol presence, despite the high ABV. (1,276 characters)

Photo of joepais
4.17/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle with a 02/10 date poured into a Chalice produced a good two fingers worth of off white to tan bubbly head that goes to a thick lace. The body is a dark burgandy color on this brew.

Aromas of dark fruits, raisins and plumbs along with a whiff of yeast

Great flavors of fruit, candy, spice and bready yeast filled my mouth. Full creamy mouthfeel nice carbonation on the tongue as well.

Great drinkability on this, a little high in the alcohol department to drink too many of these in one sitting. I guess though it depends how the night goes. (552 characters)

Photo of metter98
4.18/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: The beer is slightly hazy brownish amber in color. It poured with a finger high off white head that gradually died down, consistently leaving a thin layer of bubbles covering the surface.
S: Moderate aromas of dark fruits are present in the nose - plums seem to stand out in particular.
T: Like the smell, the taste has lots of flavors of dark fruits along with a moderate amount of sweetness.
M: It feels medium-bodied and a bit smooth on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: While you can tell that this is a strong beer from the sweetness, it hides its alcohol very well from the taste. This is exactly how I like my quads - with lots of fruits and a good amount of sweetness. (702 characters)

Photo of liamt07
4.18/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle split with Steve and crew at Beer Bistro. 75cl, 2006 vintage. Into a few tulips.

Pours dark brown, relatively opaque with some great head and retention. Mild spotty lace. Nose of dark fruits, tons of spice, cloves and pepper, all taking on a subtler and well integrated flavour given the 5 years of age on it. Taste has more of the dark fruits, plum, spice and a nutty quality. Fruits are rich, as is the body. Grape skins and chocolate. Alcohol hasn't yet disappeared. Full body and rich feel to it, not overwhelmingly so. Complex and a nice treat. (557 characters)

Photo of JayQue
4.18/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Good Quad!! Pours a hazy mahogany brown color into my Chimay goblet. Very little light comes through at the base of the glass. Fairly big off-white head ( good for this abv level) with better than average retention. Plenty of filmy lacing on the glass. Strong aroma of dark fruit (raisins, plums and some cherry), malt and some Belgian yeast and candi sugar.

Flavor is more of the same with the dark fruit and malt most dominant with the yeast and sweetness taking a less prominent role. Very flavorful, not a whole lot of spices but the flavor is strong and very appealing.

Mouthfeel is rich and smooth with a little alcohol presence, warming with just a little bite. The sweetness is just right.

Just a step below my favorites, such as St Bernadus abt 12 and Westvleteren. Relly good Quad.

Mouthfeel (809 characters)

Photo of brureview
4.18/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured a deep chocolate-coffee color with a 1F head in an Orval Trappist glass.

This beer is best at warmer temps as recommenced on the bottle: 52°F 11°C to start.
When I first poured the beer, it was colder. The bitterness overwhelmed the mouth feel and taste. As the beer warmed up,it was totally different.

Aroma( not strong even with warming) plum, fig, malt.

MF: very malty, light body, mild bitterness.

Taste: strong plum, fig, and light licorice.

Overall: the beer at its best is malty, with strong plum, fig, chocolate,light licorice and malt MF.

Excellent quad, best in a Trappist glass. (605 characters)

Photo of sweetbrew82
4.22/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750 ML bottle/ best before 03/09 (date consumed)

P: Sits very dark brown in the glass with the only light coming through the edges. The 1 finger, off-white head is soapy with small bubbles. Showed decent retention before settling to a thick cap of foam, while leaving intricate webs of lace.

A: Lots of dark fruits that aim to please! Grapes, raisins, and figs on top, with some nutty maltiness and brown sugar underneath. The alcohol smells vinous to me.

T: Silky smooth malt bill holds the palate's attention with a deeply toasted/ slightly roasted flavor that brings life to chocolate and tree nuts. Its slick & oily, mouth-coating richness is the star of the show. As for the fruit, the grapes and raisins are probably the most pronounced, with figs underneath. Hops lay low, but do deliver some earthy flavors and a spicy stab that works great with the brown sugar complimenting. The alcohol is very soft & mellow. Its non-abrasive, non-intrusive nature never overwhelms, but does warm the chest nicely. This is fantastic!

M: This Grand Cru is full-bodied, slick & oily, rich & luxurious. It's ridiculously smooth while feeling a bit chewy as it warms.

Notes: This is a fantastic Belgian Ale that is almost like a Belgian Stout! Good complexity, intriguing depth, great flavors, and good drinkability. I'm going to go snag the last bottle off the shelves the next chance I get. Now, if I could just get my hands on the rest of the Val-Dieu lineup... (1,460 characters)

Photo of micalj
4.23/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A -- very dark, but drank this at night in the hot tub...
Bottle -- 1 pint 9.4 fluid ounces, APV 10.5% per label.
S -- In my opinion, the frothy creamy head seemed to blanket the smell, acting as a great insulator for the wonderful surprise underneath.
T -- Wow! This is very enjoyable. I tried to separate the flavors, but it works so well together, I had difficulty here. I did get raisins, molasses, and a bit of brown sugar mixed with a warming but subtle alcohol. Overall, the taste blends together to be just down right soft, delicios and warming.
M --Smooth and creamy. The head persists, and while it becomes more airy as the head settles, it remains creamy. Warm and wonderful rum cake sweetness followed by just a bit of bitter finsih.
D -- What can I say. I enjoyed this brew. It is worth an extended taste test. I would by another case of this, but there are so many beers to try, I will move on for now. (916 characters)

Photo of Wowcoolman
4.23/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I thank Hop-head Mike for making sure I've had this both on-tap and from the bottle. Either way try to check this one out.
There's a noticeable jump in character from the Val-Dieu Triple. It's bigger, darker, and sweeter. The sweetness is a fundamental driving character here- we get notes of caramel and brown sugar and some dried fruit backed by the malt. This is pure Candyland for adults, with the alcohol subtly enhancing the mix, but not overpowering.
There are quads out there that have more complexity and bigger flavor profiles. Compared to some of those, this one may not be the greatest beer on the planet. Let those ones stand as a main course. This ones for dessert. (680 characters)

Photo of biboergosum
4.24/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

750ml bottle, best before Jan 2014. I had no idea that this was a Quad - otherwise I might have gotten to it much sooner upon its arrival in Alberta a while back. It possesses a crappy, unmovable Champagne-style cork, which at least gives my recently idle corkscrew something to do - silver linings!

This beer pours a hazy, fine sediment-strewn dark copper-amber hue, with three ambitious fingers of puffy, shiny, thinly foamy ecru head, which leaves a few dense, sudsy instances of hanging curtain lace around the glass as it duly melts away.

It smells of dark, complex sour fruit - plums and bruised banana, mostly - earthy yeast, light caramel malt, a bit of astringent woodiness, a touch of brewer's sugar, mild nutty chocolate, and a musty, somewhat dank hoppiness. The taste is a fair bit sweeter than let on by the nose, with a steadily subtle caramel/toffee malt, some nicely muddled black/brown fruit - again led by overripe bananas and saucy prunes - bittersweet chocolate, mild clove and faint white pepper spice, ethereal Belgian yeast, and a dull hum of moderately musty, dusty, earthy hops.

The carbonation is average, with a bit of lifting pep, and nothing more, the body an almost hefty, but that's a-ok, medium weight, with a dulcet, understatedly creamy smoothness. It finishes on the sweet side, but in a oh-so moderated manner - fruit, malt, yeast, and a conspicuously absolute absence of booze warming.

While maybe not on a totally even par with the Rocheforts and Westvleterens of this focused little world, Val-Dieu's Grand Cru (I just love saying that, for some reason) still comes off as a serious player, in both flavour and otherworldly complexity. I still can't inwardly reconcile how they sneaked a 21-proof ABV offering past me so cleanly, so additional kudos for that. (1,803 characters)

Photo of wedge
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

@ Woody's

Served in a Val-Dieu chalice, which was a nice surprise. Very dark brown, nearly black in the dim lighting with an attractive silky beige covering on top. Sweet raisin aromas dominate upfront, opening up to reveal strawberry, cherry, caramel, chocolate, banana, and vanilla...very nice. Somewhat less fruity flavor, though the raisin continues along with plum, fig, and caramel malt. No booze at all. Medium-full bodied with very light carbonation making it satisfyingly smooth. I really liked this one... (516 characters)

Val-Dieu Grand Cru from Brasserie de l'Abbaye du Val-Dieu
93 out of 100 based on 147 ratings.